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Tipton Poetry Journal Guest Editor’s Note Tipton Poetry Journal, located in the heartland of the Midwest, publishes quality poetry from Indiana and around the world. It has been my pleasure to have the honor to be a guest editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal for issue 26. I appreciate all the help from Brick Street Poetry and thank them once again for giving me a chance at this internship. I have learned a lot about editing and compiling a magazine for publication and it’s a lot of hard work, but it’s also so rewarding to see the finished piece fresh off the printer. I want to thank all the submitters in issue 26 for letting TPJ print your poems and a big thank you for being patient with us as we reorganize. A major lesson I learned from this internship was that organization matters. I have helped Brick Street Poetry and TPJ get organized to help make it easier in the future. Our future for TPJ is to make it an all online journal with a new platform. We appreciate and thank you again for your patience as we prepare for the future of TPJ. I hope that everyone enjoys issue 26, just as much as I did compiling it. On a final note, this is the last print issue of the Tipton Poetry Journal for a while. The next issue will be online. Nicole Adrienne Aguiniga , Guest Editor Tipton Poetry Journal Zionsville, Indiana Cover photo, “Mobster Pumpkins,” by Nicole Adrienne Aguiniga Copyright 2014 by the Tipton Poetry Journal. All rights remain the exclusive property of the individual poets and may not be used without their permission. Tipton Poetry Journal is published by Brick Street Poetry Inc., a tax-exempt non-profit organization under IRS Code 501(c)(3). Brick Street Poetry Inc. publishes the Tipton Poetry Journal, hosts the monthly poetry series Poetry on Brick Street and sponsors other poetry-related events.


Contents Michael Campagnoli .......................................................................................................... 1 Allen Qing Yuan ................................................................................................................. 4   Zachary Peters .................................................................................................................... 6   Becky Brown ....................................................................................................................... 7   Benjamin Norris ................................................................................................................. 8   Jennifer Sicking ................................................................................................................. 9   Corey Latta ....................................................................................................................... 10   Cynthia Chadwick Linkas ................................................................................................ 12   Don Russ ........................................................................................................................... 14   E.M.Dexter ....................................................................................................................... 18   Elias Simpson ................................................................................................................... 20   Joan Colby ........................................................................................................................ 23   George Ovitt ...................................................................................................................... 24   George Stratigakis ............................................................................................................ 26   Gilbert Allen ..................................................................................................................... 28   Grant Clauser ................................................................................................................... 30   Jill Reid ............................................................................................................................. 33   James Dickson .................................................................................................................. 34   Jeffery Tucker .................................................................................................................. 36   Neetha Prasad .................................................................................................................. 39   Jennifer Mary Brown ....................................................................................................... 40   Joanna Kurowska ............................................................................................................. 42   Peter Taylor ...................................................................................................................... 44   John Mahoney .................................................................................................................. 45   Robert Stout ...................................................................................................................... 47   Kristina England .............................................................................................................. 49  


John Middlebrook ............................................................................................................ 52 Jonathan Scott .................................................................................................................. 54   Marilyn Peretti.................................................................................................................. 56   Matthew Requa ................................................................................................................. 59   Kate White ........................................................................................................................ 62   Marilyn Baszczynski ......................................................................................................... 64   Mark J. Mitchell ............................................................................................................... 66   Melisha Garrett Haney..................................................................................................... 68   Nicholas Beishline............................................................................................................ 70   Osvaldo Rocha .................................................................................................................. 72   Sarah Brown Weitzman ................................................................................................... 74   Shirley Glubka .................................................................................................................. 76   Thomas O’Dore ................................................................................................................ 78   Biographies ....................................................................................................................... 79  


Tipton Poetry Journal

The 15th Round Michael Campagnoli Ali ducked, pushed Frazier off And shot a jab But he couldn’t dance His legs were gone Too long he carried us Frazier just kept coming And Bundini wept. (From Searching for Millay)

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Lamia

Michael Campagnoli with apologies to John Keats

no wince, no muscle flinch, no movement of the eye betrayed your perfectly still, empty face when you said goodbye. pale, blank indifference pinioned me— left the cold and sun the wind and rain the heat and snow to do their worst— and so, I live, dying slowly by degrees: breathing in that dull sort of patience that cannot be called Life. (From Searching for Millay)

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Piacular

Michael Campagnoli

peering from cover of black knotted tree, he kneeling awkwardly, sharp angles of his body (joints in pain), hard against the wordless rock, squatting: a kind of piacular crouch driven by need the urgeless want to know to know a thing, pure and simple, without contradiction or complexity, coughed, more a grunt a kind of growl and she gone, just-like-that, gone without warning, there and gone a treble peal of laughter and sadly, suddenly, gone and he, the nameless ache, alone: uncertain now, she was there at all. (From Searching for Millay)

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Tipton Poetry Journal

China-Charm from George Lai Yuan Allen Qing Yuan Blood-red, blood-bound thread of life Passing through a shadowed pin point The lid, lukewarm, dulled and dusty Inside the glass of time A five year old grain of rice Remains odorless, almost invisible With it, a petite pretty purplish petal Flourishing without air, like amber Its potential limited by its surroundings. Inscribed on the smooth Yellow-tinged surface of the rice Are yuan qing, my Chinese name Looking like two Taoist paintings It is a single small grain, But I never forget the wide fields Swaying back and forth without a swish It hangs high on my lamp head, like The memory of China sitting on a treetop Within my heart, a charming charm Restrained but living Living though not thriving

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Reality Recreated Allen Qing Yuan

A transcending wheel of regrets Sprouts forth wisps of choices. Which world shall you conquer? A directory of multiple screens, Different routes, the same ending, Where everything is really fake But the enjoyment is surreally real. An unhappy fairytale, an enchanted traveler Bestowed with the gears of the mind. A clockwork so extensive, It has gone digital Like a boy at the toy store, He plays with what isn’t his, A remote controller browsing fake realities. Films of futuristic memories Resurface on calm waters. A beautiful portrayal distorted by the ripples of time. One-time routines, impossible horrors, desired fantasies Forged in the darkness of Helios Shattered by glows of the god. A current future passing, A thought remaining unexplored What could tonight’s dreams hold?

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Tipton Poetry Journal

St. Francis’s Cathedral Zachary Peters What did St. Francis promise those birds that sit nestled in his open palms? He had been holding ghosts of the wind fleet footed seed hunters. On one knee in front of the sacristy, a glance to his left. Beyond the closed doors, sat dozens of crying ghosts pecking to get in.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Star Thistle Becky Brown From up on the ridge, the valley looks a green Too vigorous for late July We know it’s only star thistle Sprawled with its legs across the lupine You can’t tear it out, even with a pickaxe And the heaviest canvas gloves You’d have to cut it down at the base Grind out the roots like they do The elms around here All of this is a variety of wills The little pine pushing up Out of a cleft in the boulder The summer asparagus in A third harvest Like the dissolute end Of a once-sturdy lineage We, too, are bent with our stems snapped By divorce, foreclosure And a string of small collapses In February, we walked down to the slough And watched the water push a path through The crowd of lilies The sycamores were scoured white as bone In that winterscape We looked up and saw a dead bough Hammocked in the interstices Between its stauncher brothers “They call that a fool killer,” you said And yet we were allowed to walk away Unscathed

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Gesture Benjamin Norris These hands are nothing constant, forever wrapped in moments, as with old news – paper soaked deep in iodine for they’re sallow in the mornings and whiten up by noon and I can only read the changes somewhere between my mound of Venus and a small scar from something huge

To Tread

Benjamin Norris

our traffic follows wakes: it would seem you weigh out your steps with afterthoughts and the spaces left fill nonetheless the turning of snow shows: we wish to walk without leaving tracks behind until the days we were are not yet still we don’t erase regardless: clues are scattered, the paving bends before memories of spring arise unbidden

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A Sister’s Visit Jennifer Sicking Saint-Mary-of-the-Woods, November 2007

Coat collar turned Up, she meanders In the cool sun. A wind gust swirls Down golden leaves around Her. Light glints off Hair infused with fire As, hands upward Thrust, she twirls Lost in grace.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Well Corey Latta The well sat back behind her house guised by shade from overhanging branches but lit just enough to show disturbed bricks fallen from their places and a worn path that led up to the house. The well is only a monument to a past time when it held water and gave life but it will only ever hold faint light and fallen leaves from the trees that still cover it.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

What the We Corey Latta

we the silence slipped from times when words spoke into being, nothing now is that was not from words we the else unspeakable, shades from metaphors we the annunciation deaf, the magnificat misknew we the earth groaning low under the weight of inglorious creeds we the kindling dark damp under the altar of no burnt offering

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Trains Cynthia Chadwick Linkas The train to Boston eases out of Penn station, leaving New York where my kids live now. The city shimmers against a gray sky. An airplane climbs along at just our speed. My grand-babies love their wooden trains. I see them bent over the tracks they've spread all over the living room rug, their tiny necks like spring branches on a cherry tree as they ease the engines into sure arrivals. Their hungry minds love the motion, the spirits of the engines, the coal they swallow, their tenders, stories and serious work. And their hopes are like ours the good engine must make the hill, survive the tunnel. When I was young, I stopped to watch a streaming train in a frenzied hunger for far away places. Some of them, I've seen. Now I'm on my way home from a week of hugs, past wheat-colored grass, turquoise rivers, shirts and pants blowing on a line, spilled trash cans. My world. The train wheels clack, the whistle screams. I smell lollipop breath, maple syrup, Johnson & Johnson shampoo.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

No Turning Back

Cynthia Chadwick Linkas

There's no turning back after the sung note shimmers into a hushed audience. After you step into someone's life and break open its mysteries, knit them together with yours, unfold together with relief. After you've lost your real live diamond in a tomato patch where you'd been furiously picking-your-own ripe red wonders. All summer, we spooned treats into the delphiniums. They stood side by side and tall, singing out that purply blue, feathery white, ice blueberry, and the palest of lavenders that no painter in all his genius can ever capture. Then our huge yellow dog took a nap on top of the vibrant, blooming bed.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

In Element Don Russ . . . and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God. The Book of Daniel 3:25

Goldfish ballooned home in a sagging plastic bag, and then at home in their own glass bowl, denizens of a sunny little water-world, angels gilded, choired white, or those with wings – too many stiffly polychromed old pairs of wings – to fly. Or Epstein’s bronze-cast Michael sexed to try a bookish boy’s horizons: under cover of night, in earthy dreams, jack-hammered wreckers, cold lumberjacks, who clanging shut a door in the furnace of his heart mouth tongues of flame.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Pictured Stillness Don Russ

This pictured stillness, monochromatic snapshot of me at my handlebars – or this one of me diapered but upright in the bed of my (red?) Viking wagon, nothing yet come to haul me away: how like, how unlike, the stillness now, here at the thinning edge of anything imaginable, this whirligig of stars and stardust, this floating glitter-nest of bright forgetfulness and dreams. Inside white blindness, they say, may be the thing we've all been guessing at, immovable oneness folding up one allconsuming egg of night.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Volunteer Firefighter Dylan Scott It's not the shovel or boots that make him do it. He doesn't wake up at 3am and leave his wife just to see emergency lights swing across the county. It has nothing to do with the Logansport newspaper. It’s about hay fires in barns. Pulling up to flames and black smoke. A farmer at the end of his hose coughing. All you can do in a hay fire is get everyone back, look at the faces of the neighbors, and try not to smile.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A Script for the Blind Dylan Scott

Instead of letters I take a leather punch to the sheet. You can't see “a blue couch in my grandmother's front room.” It's white paper. “She was sweating as Tom dug a hole to plant the roses” is white paper. “Brie with honey on rice crackers.” Etcetera. Which is fine that it's invisible. I like that there are no words for these spear thrusts of memory. They are tire fires. Hot black fumes shoot down my throat. With my face on the paper, I can feel the punch, the small impact of words from the day my grandmother died in the yard after lunch. Braille is a hard white language.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Holding On E.M.Dexter In a false spring two weeks before the lake robins return to a soaked feeder, a sudden snow melts by morning and the story picks up again. A dirt farmhouse on a hill the broken mustang on a porch puddle smiles a dog’s whimper sags against the screen door the captor whispers let me take you & wave bye-bye. At the bottom of the cellar stair words bounce The asphalt smells different down here like rocks and dirt And confinement fastens itself like brittle armor. There is still time to hold onto every awful minute. As those before me and beside me slip away I keep going because I still have a chance. It’s the middle of the night before I can let go of that day Right before the sun comes back and people come out to play.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Rescue Â

E.M.Dexter

It was her sweet face that fooled me Staged for the web on several sites In case you missed the terrier Mix with innocent eyes. If genealogy was ever involved the end Would have resulted in my foil A perfect replacement for a missing sister Whose coordinates never took her south. She’d figured out the mean streets early And laughed wickedly at my surprise Each time she tore into me The same lolling tongue rolled inside. Five long years at the animal shelter Returned a few times because she bites A complicated diagnosis determined We give her the wide berth she desired. These were the techniques of a child. Even the returning marine was cautious And the house dogs who had for so long Produced melodies, slunk away. She still gives plenty of warning Long after the wise politely decline her The hopeful regroup never asking Is it too late to bring her back?

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Gypsies Elias Simpson The backseat tonight with her and me is filled and felt. I want a child with dirt smeared on her cheeks, hair knotted. Cold hours we'd tolerate, whole seasons gripping cold, whole seasons of sage brushes, dried fields of flowers under snow. The dying wolf / a stone's throw from the woods, a throw's stone in the shushing meadow with her tongue drying, eyes occupied. Do we dig its grave in the rocky spot that searchlights crave? The fangs could make a necklace, something to finger for protection. Its yellow corpse will rot. Proof that we love, the burial is gentle but not tender. Her fingers weave through mine. I want the pull of her tough need, forgivable, plus que humain, holy; I serve the holiness but the need the need in the face of our child, two children, babies, the need for crying to become words and for words to become children, crying the need I ignore, the need to fulfill, the need for more, but to know good from greed / I give anonymously. We think, The wolf sleeps, to sleep.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Garage sale for my sister’s divorce Elias Simpson

I'm selling the espresso maker Dad gave me. The wedding spirea bloom against the house. Our aunt's wedding gown's hung from a maple limb. Kids ride trikes down the driveway. Cleaning out the house I found her brass saxophone, the one from college, with sheet music for The Ramones she used to blast at while I piped my flute. Ten years married, they practically own each other, against each other's will could be mounted on a board. After the custody hearing and settlement we're driving to the coast, we'll leave the kids with Grandpa. I've contacted a fishing guide, who says $100 guarantees a big catch. I'm cleaning the shoes from my closet, red stilettos I wore the night she got arrested for calling a policeman faggot, my bachelorette party. We still cry, laughing about it, though it wasn't so funny when it happened. Like most big events, it made sense later, over coffee, or cake, something to distract you from the voices that say kill or love. Reasons are a dime a dozen, Mom used to say.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

What tongues we have Elias Simpson

What tongues we have, to languish in a bakery...linger on a balcony, finger pressed against its lips. Serpentine, seditious, sentry of a throat, it speaks—to or for, of or from. Patient as they come, wanderer. Sweetness impresses it to be remembered and familiar. Teeth it gainfully employs. It can do double. Let it dwell on inhospitality—it ignites; suffering— it enflames. To quiet it, simply hold it. Daughters recognize the mother's and father's, and so ancestors inhabit sounds like the gestures we make sometimes unaware. Vowels, t's, r's, fancy maneuvers—rolls. Lovers, talented or not, must tend to it, study its resemblance to a bird in flight. What other pleasures do we owe it? The quip, most certainly, and what emptiness the mouth would feel laughing in its absence. Of course it has weaknesses: easily burned, in less modern times it has been extracted to discourage speaking wrongly. The tongue deserves appreciation. Warm, soft, wet, and dark, it doesn't demand more. It just waits. There when we need it—almost always. True, it's been known to refuse speech or mastication a time or two. But what king hasn't also failed at times to achieve what's been demanded: even silence.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

The Barn at Twilight Joan Colby Twilight. In the haymow of the ancient barn we bargain. You throw bales into the back of the pickup. An open bale falls into the open trapdoor. Below grey ghostly pigs grunt and strive, huge shadowy forms in eerie halflight, scene from a Fellini film grotesque, excessive. The dust-filled light is failing. Silhouetted high in the gothic window, a peacock screams harshly. Ornamental, grandiose, raucously noble. The swine root below our feet in the bowels of this ark. Outside in trees, the wind is growing frantic as the new moon weasels itself up, parenthetical to an awful stasis.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Lost Things George Ovitt Unpacking for the final time, Sorting through cufflinks and Tie pins, a Mason’s ring, his Zippo battered on Corregidor; Photos of my mother, nine decades Of unremarkable life, images Leached to sepia, faces cracked; This box of school papers, report cards Marked in green and yellow, an ancient Medal for Latin Grammar—boxes Of dust reclaimed from basements And attics, gathered at last in my study, Traces of two lives, what’s left when There’s nothing left, when no one Writes or visits, when no one cares To sort the photos or speak of the past. It comes to us all: a time when we’ve Quit smoking and resigned from Jobs and clubs and churches, when We can’t even remember why Remembering seemed important. When I finish my exhumation and Archival labors, when I’ve drawn Taxonomies of the dead and made Notes for my children, when this Ordering of the past is complete, Then I will take the boxes outside And burn them all, heap them in a Pile and douse them with gasoline. I will build a pyre on the dead grass And let the flames fill the desert night. I’m done with it: the collecting and Saving and hoarding has ended—let memory Go on just a little longer, and then, As it must, let that burn up as well.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Winter Economies George Ovitt

“Hay dentaduras olvidadas en una cafetera”—Neruda

We’ve started saving our worn teeth in coffee pots, Our fingernails, cut to the quick, in china cups, And we no longer flush the toilet. In the bedrooms, near piles of dead mice, I stack Wet bags of garbage and wilted flowers; The sinks are clogged with thick black hair, And the bathtubs are gray with greasy water— We eat off unwashed dishes, thick with Dried food from meals long forgotten, Cows and pigs that we’ve eaten raw, Standing under the carport in torn underclothes. No one can open the windows now that The panes are piled with the corpses of flies, And our roaches, plump as stones, Scurry out the door into the bitter air. The cat, dead for a month, rests in the freezer, Stuffed among empty icetrays and unread newspapers, And the neighbors who hate us have moved into the Spare room with their leprous dogs and demented children. My wife sweeps up piles of dead skin and Shards of rotted bone, neat piles arranged on Dressers and tables, in beds and closets. In the spring, if it comes, our tired bodies will Rise on a beam of calm light, high above the Ancient cities, and disappear into the wind.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A Last Look George Stratigakis Raised as he was For duty and his land, He knew that gods had a place But also had need of men. He spoke his words And accepted their censure. Even so, he would act And circumvent the law. As he’d been trained, He solved the dilemma Laconically, cunningly: The Karneia would continue And he fight for Sparti. He sets out along the river. There he’d trained; there washed, There stole, drank, and grown. Poplars and plane trees Lift, signing in the breeze; Water rolls over pebbles Into familiar pools. These, he takes with him. At the altar of Thornax Apollo He pauses and offers small. The hills past which He can’t see the city, There, ahead. He reaches the top, Turns for a last look-Taygetos half in snow; Olive tree dotted hills; Fields waving with wheat; In the center, vegetable green and Evrotas flowing essentially. He turns north for the march. The Persians are coming to see Who he is, What Sparti is.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A Touch for Water George Stratigakis

Every morning I turn the tap on And violate natural laws. I see water swindled, Held against its will. Now loosed, It lashes out, scatters, Can’t wait to be free. In usurpations such as this Always there are casualties. I scramble to undo the wrongsI adjust the handle, the flow, Seek parity for all—search for truths I don’t yet know. Grandfather stops by. I want to tell him, today… He need not go to the irrigation ditch. He smiles. His look says some things I’ll never know; It’s the look of laws and lives known that in words say, “Always I will go.” He steps between two tins. He’s snipped their tops off, nailed in broomstick handle-grips. He starts the journey of a day not the hundred yards or so; At the ditch, he sets them down, rests on the earthen wall, Bends, cups river water in a hand, cools his face, lifts his head, Looks around: The Asia Minor War— Four children lost to foreign lands; daughter Rina ravaged by the Disease. Damn scooter dust that taunts him on way to town… That young teller at the bank…she’s a match for Christine’s boy. The olive trees…heavy with crop this year… Who can he call to harvest? He starts back. Every ten steps or so, he sets down the tins, straightens as a man, Takes a few breaths, looks around. At the cottage--a believer in lessons learned— He checks the wash basin’s valve. Shaking, trembling for lack of strength, He lifts and fills the half-moon tin fixture on the indigo-washed wall. For him the water stays.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Just My Type Gilbert Allen So many different a’s to z’s— Gothic, Garamond, Arial, Times New Roman—

yet we recognize and read them like a script if not a book. Each letter’s vast wardrobe, veiling the faces of a family all different, yet the same in ways variable and indubitable as San Francisco’s weather. Love, let us spell our word in a new alphabet every day, and let its image sear our retinas, cauterize our souls, evolve into an endless, burnt, reversible offering with something left over, like evolve itself, looking backwards from its center to make sense, its very end a very start.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Natural Selection Gilbert Allen

Cro-Magnons wore beads to make visible their place in the social hierarchy. Neanderthals left no trace of this tendency, which perhaps explains their disappearance.

A necklace is forever. Think Tiffany. Ralph Lauren. Mercedes Benz. Attitude T’s. We are what beads began: Pat Riley coaching millionaire Goliaths from inside his Armani suits; Gap jeans filling double-wide trailers; cubic zirconia on jaundiced hands that bleed. In all of these, envision Lear’s O reason not the need— and a Neanderthal with the brand of Abel.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Stone Piles at the Trail Head Grant Clauser Stone upon stone to mark the trek complete. It’s the rituals that matter, monuments aging into the ground. You walk to the top or maybe the bottom, conclude the circle and build a cairn for a heart. Some stones in your pocket to take home and grind your smooth teeth on in your sleep thinking of other stones, the ones you surrendered to rivers and canyons, the fit of your hand around their ridges, the smooth waist and jaw, what she looked like stepping out of the woods.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Snow Drift

Grant Clauser

We live to cover our losses. A rug towed over a burn mark on the living room floor or sheets pulled tight on the bed Papa died in. Outside a wind pushes snow against the barn door back and forth all night, dunes coving the wreckage of a ship. We face that wind and trudge on like a paper worm pushing through a library, swallowing blindly but learning nothing of the world.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Hunger

Grant Clauser

The blue heron wants only to live but when I see him glide in whirlpool circles into my yard I want to break him. He tips toward the nearly frozen pond where my koi sleep through winter numb as tree roots. Fair doesn’t matter. What matters is mine and the bone dagger beak pointing to the un-iced spot above my fish, stabbing at my summers, our evenings by the pond I dug with you before all those other nights and then fall came and winter and the bird’s terrible hunger for life, to eat the world and escape to a far-off field, because loss isn’t about what’s gone, it’s about what’s left behind. Not the koi, but the feather floating 32


Tipton Poetry Journal on the water. Not the skin, but the sheets that touched it, the perfume in the air.

The First Fever Jill Reid When her tiny chest heaved the fever skinward, and it cracked her soft lips open and hovereda flaming halo around her head, I held her bone-tight, tasting the char of her breath, our arms orbiting the ruby globe furnacing her throat, her hot little hands melting away all the cold, hard concerns I had cradled, tended to like children during that lost day.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Coastline James Dickson Sitting over the beach, the aftertaste of thunderstorms still lingering in our atmosphere; silent, save the occasional gull and the clumsy tumble of the Gulf. Along the horizon, oil rigs provide artificial twilight— cool, yellow, clustered nebulae scatter about perception’s edge and continue their lazy rape of the earth. You trace the specter-white tan line of my watch and smile. I return volley, close eyes, and, while taking a sip of water kissed with lime, exhale a sigh in perfect frequency and duration of a wave passing into rest.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

To My Unborn Daughter James Dickson

First Day Before you smell like too much perfume for boys I don’t like, and before you smell like your great grandpa’s stale cigarettes and whiskey vapors, I’ll be drunk off of your slight warm sweetness, like an uncut orange. Thank you. First Words The odds favor me, that my rude name, “Dadda,” will tumble from your mouth before your mother’s will. Why? Won’t I cut the cord that keeps you fed, beginning a slow starvation? Won’t your mother raise you to the chalice of her breast and feed you from herself?

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Running in Absentia Jeffery Tucker Labor Day 2010

There are no pills left, the blue-whites that rattle a mild sift down my throat. Yes, withdrawal: legs and arms hiding from my head as I run the Trace, former railroads lined in post-oak, yaupon and sweetgum. Birds climb the longleaf ceiling. The lights, still orange, help numb feet slap and twist like supplejack on asphalt, still day-warm. Watch these dead toes reach, find ground. Today I heard a friend’s parents had divorced, the friend who wasn’t a good one, who stole cola from our neighborhood store then nearly wrecked his gifted car. Another friend’s father has cancer on his groin. And I would have pills were today not a holiday, the word slipping through my ticking mouth, a slur of my own doing.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Mean Time

Jeffery Tucker

Time for hands to crack, my palms mapped in red, a fingered psalm to falling oak and this sky broad and chill, dry. Newly calm. Let’s imbosk ourselves in leaves autumned down, the roof which cleaves to floor, a grudging assent and hold, content, thick as thieves. Rake, then count hours in smoke. Turn this all to turning, the burn daubing air and underfoot. We are put here, close. To yearn.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Like This

Jeffery Tucker For Bryan

Pied Guitarist. I saw your wedding pictures today, the way you kiss her through your beard in a Nevada City barn, wildflower boutonniere on shawl-lapel, narrow-wristed as always. I do not know her. I wish you well (and her), if only for your sake and because years ago, with all evidence against me you thought I could ply my guitar like a bomb like you did, and so I still make my little echo, even now. Summer bleaches into fall, static fills the radio. I am back in your music loft, upstairs and away from a flirting remainder of friends spilling on the brick floor below. We are here because this is your place or you are this place. It’s like this, you say unlooking, Fender-ready. I glance at the alley outside, the rising heat. Like this, and again, the room now racketing on itself as you hack and hammer-on.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Insane Ramblings of a Mind with Extrasensory Perception Neetha Prasad When the bookworms came seeking me Through the worn out pages of some tale, I was reading Kafka.

“Intellectual” I heard them whispering To each other. And one by one, like meek school kids They retreated, To the dog-eared pages Of knitted words. When the termites came seeking me Through the void space where The door meets the floor, I was in deep slumber.

“Yogini” They articulated with solemnity And took silent steps backward To their crimson castles. When the ants came seeking me From their sand dunes, I was snacking A packet full/half of Lays. To be more precise American-style Cream and Onion, (My favourite flavour)

“Citizen of the world” They looked up with acceptance And marched away To their dunes Through the open windows. P.S : And I don my robes with elan 39


Tipton Poetry Journal

Becoming a Creature Jennifer Mary Brown What to have instead of a home is a giant luminous lagoon, like that one in that dream I had where a shark-shaped two-headed sea monster swallowed my dad while he smiled and waved, wearing a yellow bandana around his neck. Besides the death of dad, the lagoon was an opaque pale aqua orb floating in a sac like a water bed, and my family were all headed in, out and all over it, talking loud. Just tend to the algae bloom; let the fish inside roam free. Skim out the accidental trash left by you, drunk one night floating on an inner tube.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

NYSE

Jennifer Mary Brown

Black, blue, grey, and khaki suits with thick and thin, blue and white stripes and me, a poor excuse for a business woman, office bound, Thursday morning; the New York Stock Exchange, tight-wound with security. Men with machine guns; bomb sniffing yellow Labradors and German Shepherds waiting for their moment. A man on a conference call with a Bluetooth earpiece; an orange-haired girl playing a killer Hohner on her way to private school. Behind the four story high American flag, I picture people running frantic, barreling past each other with tiny ticker papers. Outside it is quiet save the occasional bell, the subway hum that sounds like a waterfall, and a pale blue painted fountain shaped like a giant faucet with a jet black tile bottom on the seventh floor, where sixty years ago men flung themselves down, landing flat between buildings. Everyone is defeated here on Wall Street, amid the recession; after work crowds pour down the avenues home, ignoring others in their silver cars.

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Salvation Joanna Kurowska one day, the roughcast of plaster and flesh will fall off the wall will stand naked and transparent there will be only you and chunks of people laboriously crawling onto the other side of me a hair strand, for example, or a finger that, which I will have saved

(First appeared in the volume The Wall & Beyond by Joanna Kurowska, eLectio Publishing, 2013)

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Untitled

Joanna Kurowska

Today when the wind blows I bow my head and say nothing The wind remains silent, too It makes no promises It is the wind

(First appeared in the volume The Wall & Beyond by Joanna Kurowska, eLectio Publishing, 2013)

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Raking Leaves in Wind Peter Taylor Rebellious, my mind skitters across the lawn in wild abandon, my hands tugging at wisps cartwheeling to joy to other places. I stand defeated beside piles disintegrating into undone ideas, each gust scattering thoughts beyond my reach.

Alice

Peter Taylor

When I fell down the hole, I forgot how easy it is to go from who you are to who you are, mad. You can do it, too. Just fall down a hole and forget. The hole will take care of the rest. Honest.

(Originally published in the now defunct Romanian journal, The Caterpillar Chronicles)

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A Short History of All The Time We Ever Spent Together (notes on a newly dug garden, 2008) John Mahoney i. i dug a new garden this fall off to the side of the yard where the windstorm opened a sunny spot among the maples to plant a pagoda dogwood a skeleton of bones ii. the windstorm blew a path through the wood, snapping trees just below the crown a line almost one hundred yards in length iii. it took me several long days, as i rested in the sun on the last day, i looked about me at the young encroaching maples who would soon be bending to the light and return my garden to shade v. now, i sit, as the sun reaches for it's proper place, high in my summer sky the rich loam smell fires my imagination vi. the woodland gives me back a place, a hold on the order of things, a memory of what was as written in the earth a promise, a chance, a reminder Feb 3, 2012

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an encounter with a meteor shower John Mahoney

i. this morning i stepped out into my wood at three am to watch the peak of the Quadrantids meteor shower this deep in winter the maples offer an unobstructed view of the night time sky ii. as i saw the stars fall from the sky i realized, quite suddenly, that time is not linear, what can be named constant when even sidereal time cannot be relied upon iii. so much for the certainty of time, for i know that time shifts and may, sometimes, stand quite still iv. the exquisite moment just as my eyes closed for our first kiss the proud yet frightful moment when i saw our son emerge from his mother quite blue the terrible moment when i answered the phone to hear this son's quavering voice and heard police car sirens in the background 46


Tipton Poetry Journal v. in these moments we live outside of time as a sort of a river of events, we stand in this river, look out, down the river as the current races, eternally, to the sea Jan 7, 2012

Siskiyou County Robert Stout Jutting from the ridge exposed to wind the lava wore a scarf of purple lupine. In hollows that caught dust and snow stunted pines shrugged gray, arthritic limbs. A rabbit burst from cover, stopped, twitched, veered into a thicket. I sensed, not saw, the shadow of a hawk and felt it swoop through centuries of standing there, alone, where hungers gorge on scrambling vermin, rise and float and I cried out, like hawk, like rabbit, caught in something vast and terrible beyond control.

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Old Couple, Oaxaca Robert Stout

Sweat glistening the deep wrinkles of his wince he dragged a gunnysack along the rutted, dusty street and reached for his wife’s hand. Cane braced against a curbside rock she pulled him further up the hill and for a minute, crouched as though to keep from being blown away by some ferocious wind they touched each other’s faces with quivering fingertips. I bowed my head, thanked gods that probably don’t exist for the companionship they share in what must be the dwindling days of their long lives and turned, alone, to books, computer, telephone.

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Equation Kristina England One day, he woke up an old man, the word Alzheimer labeled on his medical record. Doctors talked about treatment, how they could prolong his certain recession. Numbers were the first to go – the minutes until lunch, the dollars paid, the clockwise count of a bolt, the Click-Click-Click of precision. The medications were unquantifiable, too advanced to understand the risks or benefits. The disease, itself, measurable. A calculated list of items he would misplace – more than just keys, a wallet, or yesterday’s dinner… but his wife’s name the day his daughter was born, the smell of his first car, his mother’s death – waking to find less and less, until the morning it all tallies up to zero.

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The Model

Kristina England

The day we met, she wore a sweater with red polka dots – the kind of fabric that is itchy and hot, sheds bits of fuzz that scratches at your nose like pollen. She was a woman that you put on display – skin the texture of wax, hair the warm color of honey, legs right out of a mold, her lipstick color coordinated with shoes. She loved red velvet cake and black coffee, wrote columns about fashion for a living, and always positioned herself at gatherings so that she could join in every conversation. She was wearing the same cashmere sweater the day I found her stretched out on the bed with an empty pill bottle. Her skin blue and blotchy; her eyes void of answers. The body was embalmed for preservation, wrapped in new garments, and anointed with oils. Then, it was packaged up in a hand carved box for its final appearance.

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August

Kristina England

Night swells into a blood-red orange. How sticky its flesh. Skin, unpeeled, spirals downward like a lover’s discarded dress.

(Previously published by Haggard and Halloo.)

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Young Woman John Middlebrook Promise leans forward on lips’ window ledge. Crescents press together, now round and full. Magnetic partners meet in speech, blossoming whispers of budding bones. Her hips curve softly like willow leaves that sway and fill in summer paths. She moves like an island through diaphanous mist, gathers light, enfolds wonder in her arms and slip, draws the curious voyager to her warm secluded shoals, then inland beyond the melting waves that lap upon her shores. She repeats life’s rhythms— carries crowning heads that float in her hold of passions and breaths.

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Splash and Shatter John Middlebrook

Walking by a river, my ears tune to an anonymous splash. From rings of ripples I'm left to infer what leapt from the water, then disappeared. Or perhaps this windless sky dropped an ancient limb to the river’s bed, a breath ago, reminding me that we often miss what’s coming before it arrives. Like someone tired from sleepwalking who opens a book in the middle trying to imagine the way it begins, some stories I've appeared in approached me slowly, then hurried past to their own ends. The worst were like window panes that strained then shattered leaving shards in my eyes— through which I failed to foresee the sharp turns that foiled the plots I thought were ours.

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Reception Jonathan Scott I felt so dumb— The plunge to grab the shrimp line, forgetting: You cannot swim. Your lip quivers, Telling the hygienists How you came to lose your dentures. You felt so, so dumb— Drowning there in the bay, And you thought: Dear year-dead wife, get ready to greet me. Then came the calm. The readiness. The failure to fight. Now a glinting weal clings to your lower lid; Waiting patients assemble At the reception window. Life is fragile . . . taken for granted . . . How quickly you find yourself Dying. And I . . . and I . . . Well, every time I put my new dentures in . . . But that is all. That one tear falls. The rest is known. Can be construed From the sign-in sheet: Today’s date, time of appointment, Thick, black Sharpie lines Covering the names of the come-and-gone, Weighing above the next-to-be-seen.

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Renaissance

Jonathan Scott

There’s this man by the river strumming an arch-top Gibson Singing antique songs, and this loose-dressed woman Who dances beside him—harmonizing, clapping, Luring cash into the coin-poor case; and they made me want To dust off my handful of chords and play. There’s this woman down the lane disappearing into sun-glare, Posing with the live oaks, far beyond the camera’s focus, Who adorns herself with Spanish moss—a crown, A shawl, a boa to her hips; and she made me want To forget my limping leg and sprint the promenade. There’s this man in Chippewa Square twisting palmetto roses, Telling vast lies—the blind gullah Who taught him the many underlaps And overtucks of the trade—and he made me want To close my eyes and fashion a flower from a tree.

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Tipton Poetry Journal

A River to His Eyes Marilyn Peretti He said, where two or three are gathered in my name . . . Suddenly, in the midst it is not so easy to pour out gutwrenching realities, hidden truths, contradictions, this self. Only in the quiet of my closet does the stream of troubled life flow like water, a river to His eyes, water He has waded through before, His arms there to rescue and revive. If all is sinking I must let the Spirit intercede with those groans that my words could never express.

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My Meditation In This Late Life Marilyn Peretti

I’m early empty sit in a pew banners above reminders past goals past now: why? sit in the pew stained glass organ lectern pulpit table and cross here in a pew I receive whatever be be for me be with me be in me

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Taking Merton’s Path Marilyn Peretti

This moving away from the world, this moving inside somewhere near the center, to hold onto God is one way, but avoidance, then one day in the clatter of the world God enters in, tells me She is in my heart— the quiet which has been growing there is God, the One who takes me by the hand into the tumult, to be there without noise, without distress, with new compassion.

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#35 Matthew Requa Over under, fingers quick as spider legs drawing white yarn like a web from a flowered, bamboo bag into tiny pouches booties, perhaps mittens Shaded eyes, revealed in profile peered down, fixed with surgical concentration at hands relaxed as intoxicated tongues working the needles Jowls dipped into a permanent proud and crimson frown on a wrinkled face above a pressed shirt, silk with yellow roses staring back like Perkin’s wallpaper below a cap of curled, colored hair cropped to her age The bus rattled on but she remained steady

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I Travel in Clouds Matthew Requa

I hold water like dry sand, uncountable tears waiting to drop when days turn gray they fall, they feed the green. I drift directionless, untethered by goals and slink solemn across Cozumel sea skies as unspooled cotton smudging your perfect picture, blocking the sun. I absorb your poison words that rise up and charcoal me like chimney smoke, cold as hail they split me to shower, a deluge of acid and electric anger. Take cover and blame God, it’s easier to hide than wonder how. I watch as you lay back from afar and guess at my changing shape but you will never know.

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Enlightened in Parting Matthew Requa

You no longer impress me Others may patronize, fawn and follow Unlike them, I’ll not stand by Regaling a soul, so affected and hollow All of the horrible things you said Branded in my memory Severing our once tender bond Exhausting the depth of our history No forgiveness will be granted Casting the shackles that once enchanted Expositions so vile cannot be recanted I have tired of your stories, your dog and pony So save the charades for a patron more phony Now I should have known when you berated Our other friend you left so jaded Why did you make her feel so hated? I watched you bleed her from the start Respecting nothing, and breaking her heart Remember though, you gave her those chances Enjoying the attention and feeding advances Lusting for scratch, recasting the truth Exiling the origins of your youth Vying to impress your ignoble swain Allowing him to demean my name Never again will I allow This show is over, I’ll take my bow

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Nawlins Kate White New Orleans you thick soled shoe leaving rubbery thunderstorms all over my body You are with me everyday impossible how your color can erupt in edible humidity. I see you again sweet city sweet song You mar my dreams You are along side of me in Alley way happiness in the sunrise and dissipation of sadness Your odiferous streets A sirens hips shifting A new love interest hiding behind heavy lidded eyes then Blooming boisterous and sure I feel each stretch of your 62


Tipton Poetry Journal gilded landscape hear every sound you make Every exhale Every escape and Every Violently raw intake

A Bus Ride South Kate White

my head this thing I can’t shut off cannot kick out old memories antiquated scraps of time you are still there dark shaded sunglasses and fire power hair we are rocking side to side waiting for the bus to arrive and we rode all the way to Detroit town drinking from wrinkled paper bags hoping to drown and no one said a thing about our ages cheeks still ruddy with extra fat school bags against bruised knees eyes all wild and scared I can’t put this feeling away your forever in my residence get used to the crowd I make room for you to stay

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Sleepwalking Marilyn Baszczynski skirting the edge of breath we wind along gravel outlines of aching bones seeking ancient passions as desire exhausts us tonight the world lies still stars stay fixed upon clouds moored in the sky leaves stop whispering and the earth waits a fluttering of wings the tip of a feathered tail a beak-tap on a swaying branch and we shimmy-shiver to take off my fingertips graze your shoulder and hip trace frail contours and remember the massive gravity that pulled me in entwined we dream a younger us twirling with blue butterflies above the wild bergamot’s sweet orange scent at dawn

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Tipton Poetry Journal

Positive Imaging

Marilyn Baszczynski

Hummingbirds flutter in my chest, rest under my ribs. They swoop around organs, drink the nectar of my heart to slake their intense thirst. In constant arrhythmia they perch briefly on my aorta, dip their needle beaks deep into crevasses along the ventricle wall. The ruby-throated male lays claim to this new territory with his mate. She returns to her nest under my left breast, tends to two eggs tucked into the crook of fibrous mass. I wait until the eggs hatch, then I open wide my mouth. They scramble toward the sunlight and four fly free, iridescent as a blood red smear before they disappear.

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Insomnia Mark J. Mitchell Skipping across the surface of sleep Like one imperfectly flat stone Dampened by dreamlets, slipping Under meaningless lore that is almost But not exactly sleep. Counting breath Doesn’t help. Reciting meaningless prayers Just bounces you back to the surface. Morning will come—you can’t stop it— Like some thick, black water snake Eager to catch one imperfectly smooth stone And worry it all day under bright reflections.

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Responsible Graffiti Mark J. Mitchell

I write on public walls With invisible paint, Leaving secret messages For the only true priestesses (They know who they are). I print the names of dead comics, Rites from a forgotten religion, Entrance codes to unlock Sexual gates hidden by thighs. One by one I spell out desires That even I have ignored for so long That their names are suspect. Each morning I blend my inks: Accurate newspaper stories Added to corporate compassion With just a drop of real religion To let light through. No one can read My hermetic reports, But I paint them on walls anyway Through all these contracting nights.

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A Tribute for Chickadees Melisha Garrett Haney Â

Some days I spread granola crumbs on the concrete, a gift for passing birds, those lovers of traveling lightly. Some days I am a sweetheart. Even the beasts of air should not be forgotten. Else they should be remembered and in the remembering we can all become somewhat better. We listened to them unconsciously, which is to say they were talking, he was nodding, and I was concerned with nothing save the gorgeous veins threading his arms the knobbed beauty of his forlorn knuckles. I have a theory on life that ends in silence, pretty silence,

simply because things eventually embrace it, whether by force or sheer good luck. Either way, I gaze transfixed on the cracked concrete, plastered, at least for today, with sugary oats. Please remember I was once here. elegy for the Miles Davis in you

jazz music to calm the trembling as a perusal of the mirror tells us tomorrow cannot come late enough. do you never wonder at the smooth 68


Tipton Poetry Journal notes of the saxophone? the sad sad heartbreak of the bass? we sit at the kitchen table and in the dream I’m having we have nothing to say so I pass the toast you scramble the eggs and we salute each other silently over the place mats with orange juice, of course the kind with no pulp. sometimes I fear the kind of people we may become. but for now let it ride, give this jazz a listen and lend your soul slowly to the deep and melancholy hurt behind these piano player’s hands.

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A Hymn Nicholas Beishline Somewhere in these caves I know There used to be a spring That stripped us of our guilt And let us barter everything There always had to be a goal A need for something more When shelter turned into a cage A trap without a door The living streets will not be still They hum beneath my ear With animation unadorned By measure of the years I hesitate to ease my thirst With waters in my reach Instead I’ll make my grand return To our gravesites on the beach There’s nothing left unchanged Not since we chose to fight the war I tried to quiet your anthem But it’s too loud to ignore The living streets will not be still They hum beneath my ear With animation unadorned By measure of the years They hung their tired rosaries Against the window glass We pick bouquets of lavender And lilac for the past And anyone who passes by Will know just from the sight That we were on the losing side And somehow that’s all right 70


Tipton Poetry Journal

The living streets will not be still They hum beneath my ear With animation unadorned By measure of the years It’s time to close the shutters Or the storm will sweep away All the piles of faded letters That have led us to today I’m well aware of how I’m led Of how I’m being steered Like tides beneath the lunar pull To sink beneath the pier The living streets will not be still They hum beneath my ear With animation unadorned By measure of the years

thought upon waking Nicholas Beishline

shed the last vestiges of innocence before you leave and I’ll keep it before my eyes always after you’ve gone.

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Glittering Darksphere Osvaldo Rocha last night the moon was handsome and mild such a dress of glittering glaze single brevity and might always to resound in the hall of disturbance fleeting body of youth eternal in your eyes murkiness swallows our midnight shall I wait again? ravenous across the legions of time sharpening mucking out fangs of steel and dry blood when will we deserve a shelter by a forest a forest by a lake a lake by the end of the world? last night the moon was handsome and mild white darksphere upon your face twin sister to her lullaby I must sigh because you’re mine and bawl upon the gallant gallows

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The Traveler of Odotus Osvaldo Rocha

I traveled brisk across the wide splendid seas during countless starry nights in morning rags a fountain I saw and a palace of nothingness in a smooth kingdom not made to be found by me - the only lonely harvester of torture master of my own flight I faced the forbidden flush that crawled up to my legs like youth's fate climbs up to the sky before the wind blows confusing the path with the way the ghoulish remembrance of my prior name I had to blame and then with disdain forget the regret and all that was lost and all that was dry broken and lame for so many days and so many bays I looked for rhumbs and the sun that numbs and saddens the war above the mountains twelve years or twenty thousand hopeberries took me to discover my grave in this place yet not as tired as I should be I ate that silence and raised my home in the palace of oblivion

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Home Sarah Brown Weitzman In her eighties my grandmother wanted to go home feeling her way along the walls to get downstairs coming in her nightgown to clutch me awake and then out of my summer vacation bed. But she didn’t know me who was ten. She didn’t recognize her parlor rocking chair nor the sofa throw she’d hooked and knotted herself nor the pungent oilcloth on the kitchen table as I led her shuffling in her slippers to the back door. Instead something nagged at her something that said this is not home. Home is somewhere else. Perhaps a place she'd been well or young in was what she remembered more vividly now than this house she'd lived in for nearly sixty years. I wondered where it was she had in mind if it were real or a place in the past still standing in her memory or who she thought might be there waiting yet or if it were just a notion of what home should be. It didn’t matter. before we reached the bottom of the back porch steps they stopped us. 74


Tipton Poetry Journal

I never saw my grandmother lucid again but always wanting to find that place she believed she belonged and I never knew if she forgave me that I couldn’t take her home.

Desert

Sarah Brown Weitzman

Bare as a page the straight road ahead scrub brush alongside patches of cracked ground drying to dust. Nothing fertile for miles of arid thinking. Days of this same terrain up the Baja. Weeks of this notebook on my lap blank as the land. The border tonight and customs. Nothing to declare.

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Visitor at Day’s End Shirley Glubka The thought comes, limping, weakened, past its prime. Here, sit, say I. We settle ourselves, catch our respective breaths, give each other the eye. You knew me long ago, why the extreme delay, I ask, embarrassed by my irritation and this absence of tea and cookies, this difficulty seeing past the cane. We're on the old front porch on Seventh Street, two rockers and twilight and – I wish he'd make his meaning plain. We sit with nothing to sip. The neighbor architect comes home from work. The moon is on the wane.

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Undoing, Again Shirley Glubka

I've been rushing. Running over the surface as if it were the sea, glassy enough, not stirred to great waves, not dangerous unless the foot fell too solidly, stayed. Sank. When the simple laying down of self and a bit of judicious movement of limbs, the slightest swim, would do. For there's no getting across, is there? The sea, one person, the ratio: impossible. Lay the body down, then; float, paddle, reach out an arm, grab a handful of unkeepable water, flutter the feet.

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Decoherence Thomas O’Dore ? is this the wave collapse of genetic superpositions a quantum state of DNA fused at that measurement of conception / irreversibly decoupled possibilities dispersed across infinity..... ? this \ where the classical ego emerges from/with the quantum id ever yet to be entangled in the act of self-observation there is a quantum theory that expunges these raster bits drawing with vector geometries divergent lines of reality in parallel consistent histories the many worlds interpretation of Mr Schrodinger’s dilemma but parallel worlds / universes / lives like parallel lines can never touch as past and future touch not the present which insists it must observe and doing so discharges the now on that third rail of existence agnostic I here can imagine those innumerable gates and ways that lead unto destruction one.....perhaps.....to eternity played out in permutations

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Editor Barry Harris is editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal and has published one poetry collection, Something At The Center. He lives in Brownsburg, Indiana and is retired from Eli Lilly and Company. His poetry has appeared in Silk Road Review, Saint Ann‘s Review, Grey Sparrow Journal, Boston Literary Magazine, Night Train, Hiss Quarterly, Cherry Blossom Review, Flying Island, Lily, The Centrifugal Eye, Flutter Poetry Journal, Wheelhouse Magazine, Houston Literary Review, Snow Monkey, Fissure, Awaken Consciousness and Writers‘ Bloc. One of his poems is on display at the National Museum of Sport and another is painted on a barn in Boone County, Indiana as part of Brick Street Poetry‘s Word Hunger public art project. His poems are included in two anthologies: From the Edge of the Prairie and Twin Muses: Art and Poetry.

Guest Editor Nicole Adrienne Aguiniga attended the university of Missouri-Kansas City for her bachelor’s degree in English; creative writing. She also attended the University of Indianapolis for her master’s degree in English, focusing on creative writing and nonprofit grant writing. Now, she is happily married to Shawn Aguiniga, and welcomed her first child, Kayden David Aguiniga, in February. Editing experience includes: The University of Indianapolis English Literary Magazine, Etchings 2012-2013 and Tipton Poetry Journal 2012-2013. Her hobbies include: reading, writing, playing with her fur ball, Elena and cooking.

Biographies Gilbert Allen is the author of six collections of poems: In Everything, Second Chances, Commandments at Eleven, Driving to Distraction, Body Parts, and Catma. He also edited the anthologies 45/96 and A Millennial Sampler of South Carolina Poetry. His work has received The Robert Penn Warren Prize in Poetry from The Southern Review and has been featured on The Writer’s Almanac and Verse Daily. He is the Bennette E. Geer Professor of Literature at Furman University. Since 1977 he has lived in upstate South Carolina with his wife, Barbara—who loves him despite his frequent wardrobe malfunctions. Marilyn Baszczynski of Earlham, Iowa, originally from Ontario, Canada, teaches and tutors French in Central Iowa. She has won awards for her poetry in NFSPS and Iowa Poetry Association contests. Her poetry has appeared in The Aurorean, Lyrical Iowa, Midwest Poetry Review, Sweet Annie & Sweet Pea Review and online at Mused—the BellaOnline Literary Review, Loch Raven Review and Poetry.com. Marilyn is currently vice-president of the Iowa Poetry Association Nicholas Beishline is a doctoral candidate in Victorian literature at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he also teaches composition and literature. His writing has previously appeared in the Chronogram e-zine, M.E. Sharpe’s Encyclopedia of Global Social Issues, and Fiction Vortex. Aside from the realm of language and literature, Nick also enjoys going to the movies and playing the electric guitar.

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Becky Brown lives in Chico, California, with her husband, the poet, H.D. Brown. She teaches English and Creative Writing at Inspire School of Arts and Sciences, where she publishes the student poetry anthology, Incendio. Jennifer Mary Brown’s work has either featured or forthcoming from Berkeley Poetry Review, Signal to Noise Magazine, Relix, and Pale Horse, among others. She is a PhD candidate in English for Creative Writing—Poetry at Georgia State University. She received her M.A. in Creative Writing from University College in Dublin, Ireland, in 2009 and her B.A. in English and Studio Art from University of Vermont in 2005. She is currently the art director at District and the Editor-in-Chief of New South. Michael Campagnoli has worked as a waiter, fisherman, journalist, painter, and short-order cook. He taught literature and writing at Indiana University while studying for a Ph.D. His awards have included the New Letters Poetry Award, the All Nations Press Chapbook Award, and The Chiron Review Novella Prize. His fiction and poetry have appeared in New Letters, Nimrod, Southern Humanities Review, Rosebud, Natural Bridge, and numerous others. He’s published three chapbooks of poetry. His poems and stories have been anthologized in Best New Writing of 2010 and ISFN's Anthology #1. Three of his poems have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He can be seen most mornings running somewhere along the coast of Maine with his mongrel dog, Yogi, and Anthony, his equally mongrel 16-year-old son. Grant Clauser is a frustrated gardener and hack fly fisherman from Pennsylvania. He is the author of the books The Trouble with Rivers and Necessary Myths. Poems have appeared in The Literary Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, Cortland Review, Sow’s Ear Poetry Review and others. He blogs irregularly at www.uniambic.com. Joan Colby has published widely in journals such as Poetry, Atlanta Review, South Dakota Review, The Spoon River Poetry Review, New York Quarterly, the new renaissance, Grand Street, Epoch, and Prairie Schooner. Awards include two Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards, Rhino Poetry Award, the new renaissance Award for Poetry, and an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Literature. She was a finalist in the GSU Poetry Contest (2007), , Nimrod International Pablo Neruda Prize (2009, 2012), and received honorable mentions in the North American Review's James Hearst Poetry Contest (2008, 2010). She is the editor of Illinois Racing News, and lives on a small horse farm in Northern Illinois. She has published 11 books including The Lonely Hearts Killers, The Atrocity Book and her newest book from Future Cycle Press—Dead Horses. FutureCycle has just published Selected Poems. The chapbook Bittersweet is forthcoming from Main Street Rag Press next winter. Ellie Dexter is a high school English teacher who lives in Connecticut with her husband, son, and three rescue dogs. When not writing poetry, James Dickson teaches English and Creative Writing at Germantown High School, just outside of Jackson, Mississippi. An MFA graduate from the Bennington Writing Seminars, he lives with his wife, Greer, and their son. Some of his poems appear or are forthcoming in Stirrings, English Journal, Burnt Bridge, Bosphorus Art Project Quarterly, Ruminate, Hospital Drive, The Louisiana Review, Spillway, Amoskeag, Slant, The Fiddleback, Poetry Quarterly, and Two Hawks Quarterly.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Kristina England lives in Worcester, Massachusetts. Her poetry and fiction is published or forthcoming in Extract(s), Gargoyle, New Verse News, The Story Shack, The Quotable, and other journals. Shirley Glubka is the author of Green Surprise of Passion: Writings of a Trauma Therapist; All the Difference: poems of unconventional motherhood; Return to a Meadow, a novel; and, most recently, Echoes and Links: poems. Shirley's poetry and prose have appeared in such journals as 2River View, Conditions, Feminist Studies, h.o.m.e. Words, Narramissic Notebook, Puckerbrush Review, Seems, Sinister Wisdom, and Sun Dog: the Southeast Review; and in these collections: Lesbians at Mid-life: the Creative Transition; Mothers Who Leave: the myth of women without their children; Women in Culture: a Women's Studies Anthology; and, under the name Shirley Starkweather, Naming: poems by 8 women. Shirley is working on a second novel, and lately she’s been writing sestinas—venturing into old forms, and having a good time doing it. She's a retired psychotherapist and lives in Prospect, Maine, with her spouse, Virginia Holmes. She was born in Washington, D.C., in 1942. Melisha Garrett Haney lives in Bozeman, Montana, and is pursuing an M.A. in English from Montana State University while enjoying the state’s natural beauty. She enjoys hiking, camping, reading, painting, and watching SEC football (or any game when Peyton Manning is involved). A native of Cleveland, Tennessee, she hopes to return to the Appalachian region soon with her husband after graduating in December 2014. Joanna Kurowska is the author of five books of poetry, most recently The Wall & Beyond (eLectio Publishing, 2013}, The Butterfly’s Choice (forthcoming 2015, from Broadstone Books); and Inclusions (Cervena Barva Press). Her poems appeared in American and European journals, such as American Tanka, Apple Valley Review, Dappled Things, Bateau, Christianity and Literature, Fraza (Poland), The Green Door (Belgium), Illuminations, International Poetry Review, Kultura (France), Levure liéraire (France), Off the Coast, Oklahoma Review, Room Magazine, Solo Novo, Strong Verse, and Vineyards. Kurowska holds a Ph.D. in literature and her critical works have appeared in Anglican Theological Review, The Conradian (UK), Slavic and East European Journal, New Pages, Religion And The Arts, Sarmatian Review, Southern Quarterly, and elsewhere. Corey Latta is a professor of literature and theology at Visible Music College in his hometown of Memphis, Tennessee. He has published several poems in journals such as Product and Assisi and three books: Election and Unity in Paul's Epistle to the Romans (2009), Functioning Fantasies: Theology, Ideology, and Social Conception in the Fantasies of C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien (2010), and When the Eternal Can be Met: Bergsonian Theology in the Works of C. S. Lewis, T. S. Eliot, and W. H. Auden. Corey is also working on a book of Southern poetry called, Tulips and Tares. Corey received his Ph.D. from the University of Southern Mississippi. Cynthia Chadwick Linkas has had poems in The Aurorean, Avocet, Pegasus, Poem, and Time of Singing. Her short story “Baggage” won the PEN prize and appeared in national publications and on the radio program Fiction Alive. She is also a Renaissance classical singer and elementary music teacher.

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Tipton Poetry Journal John Mahoney lives in the woods above Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota. He practiced law as a public defender for 15 years and continues his legal research and writing. His poems will be found published by The Monarch Review; Northwind Magazine Quarterly Review; The FutureCyclePress Poetry Anthology; The Garbanzo Literary Journal; Petrichor Review, Issue Three; various issues of Kaleidoscope Magazine; Rose & Thorn Journal, Spring 2012; and a forthcoming FutureCycle Press Poetry Anthology.In the UK his poetry is published by the IMPress; as well as the on-line site, The Lake. John can be found on the Internet through MNArts at http://www.mnartists.org. John Middlebrook lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, where he manages a consulting firm focused on non-profit organizations. He has been writing since he was a graduate student at the University of Chicago, where he also served on the staff of Chicago Review. His poetry has appeared in The Meadowland Review, Fogged Clarity, and The Citron Review. Mark Mitchell studied writing at UC Santa Cruz under Raymond Carver, George Hitchcock and Barbara Hull. His work has appeared in various periodicals over the last thirty five years, as well as the anthologies Good Poems, American Places, Hunger Enough, Retail Woes and Line Drives. His chapbook, Three Visitors has recently been published by Negative Capability Press. Artifacts and Relics, another chapbook, is forthcoming from Folded Word and his novel, Knight Prisoner, was recently published by Vagabondage Press. Another novel, A Book of Lost Songs is coming soon from Wild Child Publishing. He lives in San Francisco with his wife, the documentarian and filmmaker Joan Juster. Benjamin Norris is a poet and author from Bristol, England. His poetry regularly appears in literary magazines, journals and anthologies on both sides of the Atlantic, and his debut novel, Venus, is due for release in summer 2014. Guys like Tom O’Dore do not have biographies. George Ovitt lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is the author of The Snowman (stories) and Splitting the Difference (poems)." Marilyn Peretti: “For 20 years, I have been catching ideas in the butterfly net of words. Some bright wings escape, and still I capture the beauty, grief, and fun that tangles inside the woven mesh of life.” She has authored books Cranes to Come; Let Wings Take You; To Remember, to Hope; and Lichen, Poems of Nature. Poems have appeared in California Quarterly, Talking River, Prairie Light Review, Christian Science Monitor, Rockford Review, Kyoto Journal, Journal of Modern Poetry, Deronda Review and others. She won first prize in 2000 and 2011 from Current of Ann Arbor; also first prize from The Labyrinth Society, and other prizes. She received a nomination for the Poetry Pushcart Prize in 2010. She grew up in Indianapolis and is a graduate of Purdue University. Zachary Peters is a 23-year-old former optimist who focuses his anxious energy into songs and poems that have yet to inspire anyone. He has been spiritually condemned and physically released into the world as a free-man. Often found at local bars surrounded by more empty pints than friends, he will enter conversation with anyone. Always looking for ways to embrace his inner Kerouac, Zachary takes any opportunity to travel. Find and follow him on social media sites for new music and poetry.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Jill Reid lives in Pineville, Louisiana, with her 5-year-old daughter, Ellie, and nearly too many books to count. She divides her time between teaching English and completing her MFA degree in poetry at Seattle Pacific University. Her poems have appeared in Ruminate Magazine, Relief Journal, Big Muddy, The Fourth River, and Catapult Magazine. Matthew Requa, a graduate of Binghamton University, works as a senior library clerk, surrounded by books and interesting people. “Poetry allows me to vent my mind where my tongue and nerves fail, and to pay tribute to the amazing people who support me, like my parents, Mary and Steve; my soulmate Laura; and my pug Otis who gives love without condition.” One of his poems, “22 White Doves,” is in Visions of Black Life Vol. 3 available from Africana Homestead Legacy Publishers and Amazon.com. Osvaldo Rocha is a Mexican poet and translator specializing in German and Scandinavian languages. His poems, articles and translations have appeared in publications from Mexico, Chile, Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Spain, France and the Netherlands. He earned an M.A. in Old Norse at the University of Iceland and lives in Guadalajara, Mexico, where he works as a lecturer. Don Russ is the author of Dream Driving (Kennesaw State University Press, 2007) and the chapbook Adam’s Nap (Billy Goat Press, 2005). He publishes widely and regularly in literary magazines, and has had a poem chosen for inclusion in The Best American Poetry 2012. Jonathan H. Scott lives in Birmingham, Alabama. His poetry and short-stories have been published (or are upcoming) in The Able Muse, Blood and Thunder, Caesura, Hospital Drive, The Lyric, Measure, Muse and Stone, and others. Jennifer Sicking recently moved to Fort Smith, Arkansas, from Terre Haute, Indiana, but a hearth, a stack of books, and a curled up cat still signify home. She has had work published in Blood and Thunder, The South Carolina Review, James Dickey Review, Blue Lake Review, and The Red River Review. Elias Simpson lives with his family in central Iowa where he works as a library specialist. He’s chief of the online art journal, Toad. Some of his recent poems can be found in H_NGM_N, Interim, and Hiram Poetry Review. Robert Joe Stout is a journalist, novelist and poet. He has been active in human rights delegations and won awards for his work in caring for the aged in Mexico. His books include A Perfect Throw, Why Immigrants Come to Mexico and The Blood of the Serpent: Mexican Lives. George Stratigakis’s work has appeared in The Innisfree Poetry Journal, Contemporary American Voices, and Quiddity. He is the editor of a collection of classic short stories adapted for modern readers.

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Tipton Poetry Journal Peter Taylor has published Trainer (Paget Press), a mosaic of poems forming the experience of flight training in Canada during the Second World War, with an introductory poem by Raymond Souster. His other titles include First Epistle to Dr. Torr and The Masons (Gryphon Press), and Aphorisms, (Adela Press). He co-authored, with Stan Solomon, Patients First: The Story of Family Medicine in Canada (Key Porter Press). His poems have appeared in journals in 11 countries, including Anansesem, Anatomy & Etymology, Aperçus Quarterly, Call & Response, Contemporary Verse 2, The Copperfield Review, Eunoia Review, Frostwriting, The Linnet's Wings, StepAway Magazine, Nether, The Glass Coin, Open Minds Quarterly, Petrichor Review, and Pirene’s Fountain. They have also been anthologized in The Best of Grain and We Stand on Guard. His experimental verse play on the Civil War, Antietam, won honorable mention in the 2010 War Poetry Contest in Northampton, Massachusetts. He lives in Aurora, Canada. Jeffery Tucker teaches creative writing at Hampton University in Virginia. His work appeared in Inscape, Saw Palm, Poetry South, Swarthmore Literary Review, Mason’s Road, and elsewhere. He is one of the faculty advisers of Saracen, Hampton University’s literary journal. Sarah Brown Weitzman has had work published in numerous journals such as America, The North American Review, Rattle, The Mid-American Review, The Windless Orchard, Slant, Poet Lore, Potomac Review, etc. She received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Her latest book, a children’s novel titled Herman and the Ice Witch, was published by Main Street Rag in 2011. Kate White is a 28-year-old LGBT, working writer near Detroit, Michigan. She has a restaurant review column in the Troy Gazette newspaper. She has been published with Ink Sweat & Tears publication as well as The Linor Project. Allen Qing Yuan, a Pushcart nominee and author of Traffic Light (2013), attends UBC and copublishes Poetry Pacific with his poet father-mentor Changming Yuan in Vancouver. Allen, 18, has had poetry appearing in more than 70 literary publications across 16 countries, including Cordite Poetry Review, Istanbul Literary Review, Literary Review of Canada, Mobius, Paris/Atlantic, Oklahoma Review, Poetry Kanto, Poetry Scotland, Shampoo, Spillway, Taj Mahal Review and Two Thirds North.

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Tipton Poetry Journal - #26  

Fall 2014

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